GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Review
Hey everyone, The Incredible Hulksta (AKA Hulksta) here bringing you my review for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy. WARNING: Spoilers from the movie.
Many people out there on the internet would have you think that Marvel was sticking their neck out with Guardians of the Galaxy. Considering that many people out there, many CBM users included, had not heard of the team prior to the films announcement; it's not so surprising. Like the Guardians themselves, Marvel takes tactile risks. It appears as if they just do as they please but they always have a plan.
From the rumors of the films existance, to the casting, I was completely on board with this movie. In fact I have an inherent bias considering that reading Annihilation and the first issue of the rebooted team was one of the first comic books that got me back into comics after foregoing the medium of the better part of a decade. The Guardians brought about my rennaisance, and it's only fitting that the film does the exact same.
What the film did masterfully was integrate so many characters into the film, providing enough backstory to get you on board with the characters, but never in a way that it bogs down the plot. I felt for Peter when his Mother died, I felt for Rocket being essentially mutilated and rebuilt. It didn't do so in a way that lingered too long, it served the plot ultimately and any backstory was all for the greater good. In this sense, this was the perfect origin story.
Unlike The Avengers, where it took quite a while for the characters to come together, Guardians does so much more effectively and naturally. It doesn't have as much exposition and scenes of bickering to get these characters together, it shows their motivations and naturally lines everything up so that when the team finally comes together as a true team, it makes sense and never feels forced or rushed.
On that note, the pacing in this film was spot on. I mean so in a way that I am particularly sensitive to length in movies. I always go back to The Dark Knight Rises. A film I enjoyed I did however feel it's length at times. Occasionally squirming in my seat and wanting to just do something else. It's particularly annoying when a film wastest time on unneccesary scenes and uneccesary exposition. There is none of that in Guardians of the Galaxy. The film makes full use of its run time and like a lean piece of meat, it's perfectly rounded out with no imbalance amongst its scenes. I can't think of a scene that i disliked or hated. I loved every scene in this movie and how it flowed.
In general, this is an awesome script with a bunch of humor that unlike a film like Thor: The Dark World where the humor made no sense in the context of the film, Guardians makes humorful observations of characters and situations and it all made sense. It wasn't as witty as Whedon humor, but it felt more natural. It's a style of humor that is quite unique.
As for the future of the MCU, Marvel certainly eliminates all doubt that Infinity Gauntlet is coming. With a clear shot of the gems, and the gems themselves being mentioned on more then one occasion. There is a lot here in this movie that sets up an interesting plot for Phase 3. Maybe it was seeing Thanos, and hearing him speak for the first time, or having The Collector essentialy lay out what the Infinity Gems are. Unlike a lot of other MCU movies, what this presents is an engaging adaption of The Infinity Gauntlet stroy arc, and I couldn't be more excited.
There was a few moments where I stopped and thought to myself where they are going with elements of the story, particularly Drax and Ronan. In the comics, it's Thanos that kills Drax's family. This film makes an almost uneccesary subplot out of Drax's search for who killed him, when fans of the comic know this already. As fans of the podcast I host (the Three Angry Nerds Podcast) know, I've made my disapproval of the changing of Drax's backstory. In some sense it's dissapointing that they spent almost too much time to build to this revelation when they could've written things differently so that Drax knew it was Thanos all along and sought out Thanos through his pursuit of Ronan.
Also too, in some dialogue scenes, the energy got so intense that the characters yelled at eachother. It was a bit distracting, and in my home I'd just lower the volume but it's a minor complaint really.
All in all I'd say this film is PERFECT. But wait, I just spewed out two complaints. Ultimately with everything in mind, the good outweighs the bad. It's a perfect origin story that works brilliantly and sets up a lot (Star-Lords heritage, Drax's history, more Infinity Gems) for the confirmed sequel. I will go on to say that this is my favourite solo MCU film so far, and at the present moment -- I do think it's the best MCU film so far.
Is Guardians of the Galaxy Better than...
...The Winter Soldier? Yes.
This is a very tough one as I find that both films are expertly paced. I did prefer the plot more of Guardians and generally found the villains (Ronan, Nebula, Thanos) more interesting then the villains in The Winter Soldier.
...Thor: The Dark World? Yes.
This is no contest. The Dark World is my least favourite MCU film.
...Iron Man 3? Yes.
while Iron Man 3 had a lot of great ideas, I think the plot was less organized and effective then Guardians.
...The Avengers? Yes.
While Whedon and The Avengers were the trailblazers in ensemble superhero films, Guardians builds on and expands on the brilliant work laid by Whedon and co. In some sense it's not fair as Whedon had to make it work first, but James Gunn just takes it a step above.
...Captain America: The First Avenger? Yes.
Guardians is a way better origin story.
No offence to Rocket, but John Candy pretty much owns the funny furry market.
This movie gets 100 Uncle Joeys! Cherish this James Gunn.
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